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The University Magazine

Kate Gleason College’s new research wing opens

Bill Destler
Kate Gleason College of Engineering Dean Harvey Palmer, left, chats with Ralph Harper, secretary and treasurer of the Gleason Foundation, at the dedication of the new engineering wing.

Students and faculty in the Kate Gleason College of Engineering are making use of a new, multi-million dollar research wing of the James E. Gleason Building dedicated in September. The wing houses the Department of Computer Engineering, the Brinkman Machine Tools and Manufacturing Laboratory and space for student project work through the college’s multidisciplinary senior design program.

The addition includes a number of state-of-the-art laboratories that will assist in advancing the college’s collaborative efforts with industry, promote expansion of research initiatives and provide additional facilities for undergraduate and graduate student work, including senior design. The college requires all bachelor’s degree students to complete a design project during the final year of the program.

The construction was funded through contributions from donors including the Gleason Foundation, the Brinkman Family Foundation and Harris Corp.

“The Gleason family has long believed that RIT’s combination of real-world application, education and research is a major asset to our region and the engineering community,” says James Gleason, chairman of the Gleason Foundation and trustee emeritus of the RIT Board of Trustees. “We are happy to continue our support of the College of Engineering’s mission through this important project.”

“Having grown up in the machine tool industry, I have a better appreciation than most of how important the machine tool industry is to the well being of the country,” says Robert Brinkman, chairman of Brinkman International Group. “Defense, home building, electronics, plastics, transportation and medicine would all be impossible without machine tools to build the necessary tools, components and equipment. RIT’s College of Engineering has long provided highly competent graduates and applied research to this industry and I am proud to support the continued expansion of their efforts.”

“Harris has always been committed to investing in the Rochester community,” says Dana Mehnert, president, Harris RF Communications. “The outstanding engineering talent that stems from RIT graduates provides Harris with a great opportunity to strengthen its workforce. We are pleased to contribute to their engineering research and education.”

Will Dube